The safest place to keep your ferret when not attended is in a cage. A single ferret requires a cage that is no smaller than 30”w x 18”w x 18”d. The cage should include a rectangular litter box, heavy food bowl, 16-oz. water bottle or a second heavy bowl, a sleep sack or sweat shirt, and a hammock.
Free roam of the house should only be allowed when you are supervising! The best thought to keep in mind is that a large cage is not required if you are allowing the appropriate time out needed by your ferret. Ferrets arrange their waking hours around your schedule. They also sleep approximately 17 to 20 hours per day. Therefore, a large cage is not necessary for their comfort, as it is only their bedroom!
Many ferrets can be litter trained, although chances are good that your ferret will not hit the pan every time. You should have a litter box available.
You will need to purchase litter for your litter pan. We recommend using wood pellets that are made to be used as fuel in stoves. They come in 40-pound bags, are very inexpensive (around $5.00), and are available at hardware and fireplace stores (such as Home Depot). Other litters can cause health problems: When inhaled, clumping sand litter can cause blockages in the lungs, and clay litter has a tendency to crack delicate foot pads and cause a lot of discomfort to your ferret. Never use wood shavings of any sort in your cage. Ferrets have extremely sensitive respiratory systems and become very irritated by the wood resins. Wood chips and clumping litter can also be ingested, and the end result is an unexpected expensive surgery.
Other recommended items include a ferret harness for taking your ferret on a walk. We really like the Premier 5 n 1 harness or the Marshall Farms harness. Ferrets have a hard time getting out of these brands.
You will also want a carrier to transport your ferret. There are many good carriers on the market. Focus on getting one that your ferret will not be able to escape. (My ferret learned how to open the zip-close ones when she was halfway to the vet's office, and hilarity ensued, so I don't recommend those.)